Mansfield Town owner John Radford says he will now ‘carefully consider’ continuing with plans to build a new hotel in the town.
Mr Radford initially revealed plans to build a new hotel close to the One Call Stadium, but later placed a bid to work with Mansfield District Council to build a new facility on the site of Mansfield’s former bus station on Rosemary Street, which is currently used as a carpark.
The partnership was announced as a done deal by Mansfield Town, who even discussed the development in the programme notes for the weekend’s game.
However, Mansfield District Council released a statement later, noting that Mr Radford’s proposal was ‘not the preferred bid’.
In response, Mr Radford said: “I am bitterly disappointed that my plans for a new hotel in Mansfield, flagshipped by a global brand, have been held back.”
He initially met with Mansfield mayor Kate Allsop in January to discuss proposals for a new hotel at One Call Stadium and then had a subsequent meeting on September 19.
He said: “At this meeting I was persuaded that it was in the best interests of the town to build a hotel on the site of the old bus station. After paying fees for architects and surveyors, I was both surprised and disappointed that my bid had been rejected. In truth, it feels like I may have been led up the garden path.”
Mansfield MP Ben Bradley has called the council’s decision “unwise” and “immoral”.
He said: “They asked them to invest time and money in to a plan that it appears was never likely to go ahead, which is a massive oversight on their part. It is incredibly important that MDC don’t sour that relationship, which could cost Mansfield in the future, and I think that needs to start with an apology for the way they’ve handled this whole saga.”
In response to the criticism Mansfield mayor Kate Allsop said: “The council has followed a robust procurement process to secure a developer for our site in the town centre.
“Whilst the bid submitted by John Radford was not successful, we are keen to continue working with Mr Radford to realise our shared ambitions for the town in terms of regeneration, growth and prosperity.”
The council said it will reveal further information about their “preferred developer partner” in the next few weeks.